Pilot Error Caused 2008 Air Ambulance Crash: NTSB

March 17, 2010
Abram I. Bohrer

CHICAGO (AP) — The National Transportation Safety Board’s final report on the fatal 2008 crash of a medical transport helicopter in Aurora says the pilot’s preflight planning was inadequate and he was flying too low.

The report also says a DuPage Airport air traffic controller contributed to the accident by failing to issue a safety alert.

Sixty-nine-year-old pilot Delbert Waugh of Carmel, Ind., flew the Bell 222 helicopter into a radio station tower on Oct. 5, 2008. The Air Angels Inc. emergency medical flight was transporting a 14-month-old girl from a hospital in Sandwich to Children’s Memorial Hospital in Chicago. Waugh and the girl were killed in the crash, as were a nurse and a paramedic.

Bolingbrook-based Air Angels went out of business in February 2009 after being sued by the dead girl’s parents